GFCI protected outlet not working

I tested kitchen outlets the other day. One GFCI outlet with two protected outlets down stream. The first one I tested was the outlet in the middle. Everything was fine until I reset the GFCI, power did not return to the middle outlet but the last outlet did have power. No matter what I did I could not get any power back to this outlet. Can someone enlighten me as to what is going on?:?:

Don’t assume that the outlet was protected by the GFCI that you could see. I often see multiple circuits in kitchens. It may have been protected by a GFCI in another location. Was there a GFCI under the sink? Behind the refer? In the panel? Elsewhere?

No, I’m sure it was this GFCI. I heard the distinct pop of the GFCI when I used my tester on the outlet. I’ve added a photo showing where the outlets were. GFCI outlet to the right of the sink, outlet with no power to the left and a third outlet farther to the left.

There’s another GFI somewhere. Especially since kitchens should have two circuits. I usually leapfrog the circuits with receptacles in the kitchen.


Jeff is most likely correct. If the kitchen counter top is wired correctly it should have 2 separate 20 amp circuits and the outlets should be staggered from 1 circuit to the other…


Well, I guess it’s possible. I did not see another GFCI, but it could be hidden somewhere.

That is one way of doing it but it’s not required to wired that way. Personally I would not stagger them but that’s just me.

David… (right side of pic)… was that (tv or computer ?) plugged into a GFCI? Protected by same as above? Any GFCI’s in panel?

There is no requirement for the circuit to be staggered. You could have one circuit on one side and the other on another wall. You could also have one receptacle on one circuit and all the other small appliance receptacles on the other circuit. The NEC only requires a minimum of 2 20 amp circuits. It does not specify the arrangement of those circuits.

Isn’t it also OK to have kitchen appliance (GFI) circuit(s) connected (even if it’s down stream) to a receptacle in another room, such as dining room?

Yes, it’s permitted.

Thanks for posting that article Robert.

Thanks, I thought it was. Always good to be reassured.

Anytime Jim. :slight_smile:

Robert, I have been running into homes from the 80’s with the rear patio receptacle covered by one of the kitchen GFCI. Any idea when this changed or is it still allowed?

It should not have been off the kitchen receptacle circuit. These have been dedicated to kitchen/dining receptacles only for probably 30 years. It was common for exterior receptacles to be downstream of the bathroom GFI until the late 80s or early 90s.

From what I can remember I think that Jim got it. Many times you would feed an outdoor receptacle off of an interior GFCI to save one from buying an extra GFCI device especially when they used to cost $30 or more.

This was a 7 year old home. No GFCIs in the panel. The only argument so far is that this outlet is not protected by this GFCI. Lets say it is covered by this GFCI. What would cause the protected outlet to lose power and another one down stream not to? Is that even possible?

Just read original post. It might be possible that the power comes into the middle and branches left and right. There is the possibility of a loose connection at the one box.

A home so new should have been wired more closely to todays codes. Do you know what year NEC is enforced in that area?

The same thing happened to me last week. Five outlets in the kitchen and two GFCI’s. I tested them with my SureTest and the circuits tripped fine. But when I reset the GFCI’s power did not return to two out of the outlets. I searched everywhere for a tripped outlet but didn’t find it.